Researchers from China’s Zhejiang University are looking for new ways to improve preoperative planning for procedures for children, with their findings outlined in the recently published ‘Utility of three-dimensional printing in preoperative planning for children with anomalous pulmonary venous connection: a singer center experience.’ Many of the greatest benefits were put into action for this study as the 3D printed models could be used for completing diagnosis, assessing treatment options, and planning for surgery.
In this study, Chinese medical scientists studied 17 children diagnosed with anomalous pulmonary venous connection (APVC) from November 2017 to January 2019. Ages ranged from only two days old to twenty months old, with the following variations:
- Ten children suffering from total supracardiac APVC
- One child suffering from intracardiac APVC
- Mixed type APVC in one child
- Partial APVC in three children
Data from CT scans was imported into Mimics 19.0 software for 3D modeling and design of the heart model to display elements of the heart such as papillary muscles, muscle bundles, and outflow tracts. While very little research has been performed for APVC citing the assistance of 3D printing, it is clear from this study that the use of models allows for much greater light to be shed on the condition.
“We manually labelled each area according to the left ventricle (LV), right ventricle (RV), LA, RA, aorta (AO), and pulmonary artery (PA) area modules of the CT heart module and distinguished them with different colors. Special attention was paid to labeling the boundaries of each part,” stated the researchers.
3D printing of the personalized heart models was completed via an ISLA 650 3D printer (Shining 3D, China). Preoperative planning was then based on the models, along with medical history of the patients, and imaging data. The models were also used as surgical guides in the operating room upon being sterilized. Each patient-specific heart model took around half an hour to two hours to model, with 3D printing requiring anywhere from two to five hours. Surgeries were performed on all 17 patients, and each procedure was successful.
“The malformations demonstrated by the 3D models were consistent with intraoperative observations, and presurgical planning was in line with real surgery programs. These heart models could be sterilized and brought into the operating room for surgery navigation. These 3D models greatly assisted the presurgical planning for APVC surgery and were of great clinical value from our experience.
“After surgeries, these heart models were evaluated on whether they were of high quality, and whether they could help presurgical planning, reduce unforeseen circumstances, and benefit medical education. An evaluation pertaining to the issues above was conducted via questionnaire by our cardiac surgeons and cardiologists.”
3D printed heart models and medical devices such as implants have been used in connection with cardiac issues and defects, with guides and models used in everything from complex medical training to pediatric surgeries, methods for creating heart patches, and more.
What do you think of this news? Let us know your thoughts! Join the discussion of this and other 3D printing topics at 3DPrintBoard.com.[Source / Images: ‘Utility of three-dimensional printing in preoperative planning for children with anomalous pulmonary venous connection: a singer center experience’]
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